As soon as you have a captain aboard, the 'automatic trade' icon in the ship menu will be enabled.
This feature allows you to pick a profitable route which your ship is to sail automatically. You can choose the goods you wish to trade and the prices at which they are to be bought or sold.
You can select up to 10 cities that will be part of your trade route. The positions of the cities can be changed using 'drag and drop'.
Using the 'Goods' button next to the city's name, you can select the goods you would like to trade in that city. You can also specify whether you would like to trade between your ship and the city or if you would just like to transfer goods between your trading office and the ship. Obviously, the latter is only available if you own an office in that city.
If you want to sell goods, you must specify the lowest price at which the captain should sell your goods. If you want to buy, the maximum price you are willing to pay must be specified.
For each commodity, you also have to specify how much you want to trade or transfer.
In some cases, you will want to specify priorities for certain goods. For example: You would like to buy pottery in Cologne - but only if wine is not available. Just set your prices for both and then drag the button for 'wine' (keep the left mouse button pressed on the button and then move) above the 'pottery' button. This will raise the priority for wine. Now wine will be bought first and pottery will only be bought if there is storage space left in the ship.
When you are done with all the settings, don't forget to activate automatic trade. The ship will then begin with the first city on the list. Once it reaches the last city, it will start from the beginning.
If it doesn't make sense to head for one of the cities on the list (e.g. if you didn't get the goods you were supposed to sell there), the captain will skip it automatically
The automatic trade feature can be used to provide your own businesses with raw materials or to distribute the goods you manufactured.
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